My friend has a 1970 Mercury Marquis, its having trouble starting and running, what could it be?

Tiny
PAPAJOHNSLICE
  • 1970 MERCURY MARQUIS
  • 200,000 MILES

My friends got a 1970 Mercury marquis, its a 429 v8 with a 2b carb, it broke down on the road the other day, (fuel filter was bad) we replaced the filter easy enough. But it wouldnt start, I checked and found that the carborator was getting gas, and the spark plugs all spark, we got it to start for a few seconds using starter fluid, but it would idle down very quickly, the only way to keep it going for more then a few seconds was to continuously pump the gas, but it would die eventually, and when we got it to start (for the short time) it would blow out a ton of black smoke from the tail pipe, which eventually turned to white when the starter fluid went through it. We couldnt get it running long enough to test if it was the head gasket, but another thing is, while we tried to start it, vapors would not come out of the carb, but they would come out of the oil intake, I guess my question is, what could be wrong with the car?

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Thursday, April 12th, 2012 AT 2:08 AM

21 Replies

Tiny
FIXITMR
  • MEMBER

The black smoke sounds like it's flooding. Dirt/rust coulda got into carb needle seat and letting it flood.

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Thursday, April 12th, 2012 AT 2:18 AM
Tiny
CJ MEDEVAC
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A McGYVER KINDA WAY TO VERIFY IF THIS IS THE CASE (BASICALLY THE FLOAT IS WEDGED OR STUCK OPEN. FOR SOME REASON, TRASH, ETC)

WHEN FOOLING WITH FUEL STUFF, DO IT OUTSIDE, WELL AWAY FROM ANYTHING YOU CARE ABOUT! A WET TOWEL FOR MINOR FLAMING, AND A FIRE EXTINGUISHER FOR THAT BIGGER POSSIBILITY. AND YOUR WELL INFORMED BUDDY AS A BACK-UP IS ALWAYS A GOOD THING!

YES---I AM TRYING TO SCARE YOU! IT'S THE TIMES THAT YOU WERE NOT PREPARED THAT WILL MORE THAN SCARE YOU! SO BE SAFE. THIS SHOULD GO ROUTINE

FIND A RUBBER FUEL LINE JUST BEFORE THE FUEL ENTERS THE CARB

WITH A PAIR OF NEEDLE NOSE PLIERS, SQUEEZE THE RUBBER FUEL LINE SHUT."RUBBER". NOT A STEEL LINE!

CRANK THE ENGINE. IT SHOULD RUN, MIGHT BE A LITTLE ROUGH AT 1ST, THEN IT WILL SMOOTH OUT. EVENTUALLY IT WILL RUN ROUGH AGAIN AND DIE. RELEASE THE PLIERS FOR A FEW SECONDS (LETTING FUEL INTO THE CARB). SMOOTHS OUT AGAIN.

AFTER YOU GET THE HANG OF IT, YOU CAN ALLOW ENOUGH FUEL IN TO KEEP IT GOING (AS IF YOU WERE THE FLOAT, NEEDLE AND SEAT)

IF THIS IS THE CASE, YOU ARE GONNA HAVE TO DO SOME EXPLORATORY CARBURETOR SURGERY TO GET THE FLOAT/ NEEDLE AND SEAT ISSUE RESOLVED

LET US KNOW WHAT YOU FIND

THE MEDIC

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Thursday, April 12th, 2012 AT 2:52 AM
Tiny
PAPAJOHNSLICE
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I have tried that (in response to "CJ MEDEVAC") I have choked it and attempted to start with out pressing the throttle, nothing happened, then I was able to start it while hitting the throttle, it ran for a few seconds, then idled down until it died, and at that moment the smoke was white, a buddy of mine said that it might be the ignition coil, but im not exactly sure if thats it or not, and the carb is fairly new, and has been cleaned, so it doesn't seem like it would be the needle

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Thursday, April 12th, 2012 AT 3:40 AM
Tiny
CJ MEDEVAC
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WILL STARTER FLUID KEEP IT RUNNING IF YOU NURSE IN THE AMOUNTS?

THE MEDIC

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Thursday, April 12th, 2012 AT 3:53 AM
Tiny
PAPAJOHNSLICE
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Yeah, but only if I have the engine running at a high rpm, it wont run at an idling speed

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Thursday, April 12th, 2012 AT 4:06 AM
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
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Check to make sure there is fuel to the carb. If you can't get it to fire with the choke closed, it isn't getting fuel.

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Thursday, April 12th, 2012 AT 4:28 AM
Tiny
PAPAJOHNSLICE
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Ive checked at there is plenty of fuel going to the carb, I had my friend pump the gas and I could clearly see enough gas going into the carb, I think it might not be getting enough spark, but im not entirely sure

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Thursday, April 12th, 2012 AT 4:31 AM
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
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Check the spark. It should be a hot blue snapping spark. If it is orange, white, yellow. It is weak. Also, since it has so many miles on it, I recommend checking engine compression. It may be too low to run gas.

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Thursday, April 12th, 2012 AT 4:39 AM
Tiny
PAPAJOHNSLICE
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When I pulled the plugs out they were really hot, and they all sparked with a blue/white spark, and the compression is good on all cylinders from what I could tell, but im also curious as to why vapors come out of the oil intake. I know its bad, but I dont know why its happening

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Thursday, April 12th, 2012 AT 4:43 AM
Tiny
CJ MEDEVAC
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IS IGNITION SYSTEM POINTS OR ELECTRONIC. OR UPGRADED TO ELECTRONIC?

IF POINTS, HAVE YOU CHECKED TO SEE IF THEY ARE INSTALLED RIGHT. GAP. NOTHIN' WORN DOWN OR OFF?

IS IT RUNNING SMOOTH OR IS IT SKIPPING AND SUCH WHEN IT IS RUNNING?

THE MEDIC

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Thursday, April 12th, 2012 AT 4:47 AM
Tiny
PAPAJOHNSLICE
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Its a points system. I gave it a tune up a few days ago, replaced the cap, button, and points, and made sure its gaped at.21 exactly as the manual says, it has a good flow of blue spark when being cranked over, all the wires and plugs are good, they are also brand new, the only thing I didnt replace is the coil, and from my understanding the car had been running fine for aprox 30 and had a full tank of gas, then died while going down the road, and would start for a few seconds then die

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Thursday, April 12th, 2012 AT 4:53 AM
Tiny
CJ MEDEVAC
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LOOK AT THE POINTS AGAIN---SOMETHING SLIPPED--BROKE--ADJUSTMENT GOT WRONG. DO THE EZ STUFF BEFORE YOU BUY STUFF OR TEAR IN DEEPER

THIS IS MY JEEP

TRY THIS. FOR GIGGLES

1950s. GRAND THEFT AUTO---THIS WILL ELIMINATE THE WIRING FROM THE KEY. JUST FOR A TEST

POS BATTERY TO POSITIVE COIL

THE MEDIC

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Thursday, April 12th, 2012 AT 5:02 AM
Tiny
CJ MEDEVAC
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LOOK ON IN THE DIST DEEPER---MAKE SURE THE SPRINGS ON YOUR CENTRIFUGAL ADVANCE ARE NOT BROKE. THE WEIGHTS ARE NOT THROWN OUTWARD AND NOT SPRINGING BACK IN (WHICH WOULD CHANGE THE TIMING)

THE MEDIC

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Thursday, April 12th, 2012 AT 5:08 AM
Tiny
PAPAJOHNSLICE
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Haha nice trick, and when I was looking at it I checked again, and the gap on the points was still at.21, what I dont understand is, I know that the fuel filter would make it die (because of lack of gas) but it was running fine before it died and I replaced the fuel filter, so something had to have messed up when the fuel filter went out, but im not exactly sure what could have happened, I wasnt in the car when it broke down so its hard for me to tell what it sounded like when it died

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Thursday, April 12th, 2012 AT 5:09 AM
Tiny
PAPAJOHNSLICE
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I have already checked the Centrifugal advance, and the springs and weights are in working order

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Thursday, April 12th, 2012 AT 5:15 AM
Tiny
CJ MEDEVAC
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I MUST HIT THE SACK SOON---0117 EASTERN TIME...WORK IN THE LATER MORNING!

WILL IT RUN WITHOUT FLUID IF YOU KEEP GOOSIN' IT?

IF YOU CAN GET IT TO REV..............

READ THIS---WON'T HURT TO TRY THE RAG THING!

http://www.2carpros.com/questions/jeep-wrangler-1988-jeep-wrangler-engine-issues-when-braking

THIS WAS SUBMITTED BEFORE THE SITE WAS REMODELED---"QUOTATIONS" SORTA DID NOT TRANSFER OVER WELL...MAY BE A BIT HARD TO READ

jacobandnicholas MAY BE ON LATER IN THE MORNING

fixitmr......I DID NOT MEAN TO TAKE OVER, SO YOU MIGHT BE OF MORE ASSISTANCE TO THIS FELLER

SEE YA'LL TOMORROW EVENING

THE MEDIC

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Thursday, April 12th, 2012 AT 5:25 AM
Tiny
CJ MEDEVAC
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ONE LAST THING

IF THIS RIG IS NEW TO YOU---AND IS GONNA BE A KEEPER

IT WON'T HURT TO CATCH UP ON SCHEDULED MAINTENANCE---LIKE PLUGS, WIRES, DIST CAP, ROTOR BUTTON, ETC

THE MEDIC

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Thursday, April 12th, 2012 AT 5:28 AM
Tiny
PAPAJOHNSLICE
  • MEMBER

Thanks for the help medic, have a good one, and it wont run without the starter fluid, it will only run with either allot of fluid, or a semi continuous spray of starter fluid.

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Thursday, April 12th, 2012 AT 5:30 AM
Tiny
PAPAJOHNSLICE
  • MEMBER

Yeah its new to me and my friend, he just got the car a few months ago and its a keeper if we can make sure its working properly, and im not exactly sure what the previous owners maintenance history on the car is, but I gave it a FULL tune up, and even a few steps past the normal tune up, I have also taken the time to right down the millage of when I gave it the tune up, and when the next one will be, I like to keep old cars in good shape, they are normally easier to work on, and allot more fun to, well thanks for your help, I have a few more things I need to test after I get the battery charged back up in the morning, reply back in the morning if you can, and I will tell you how the progress is going.

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Thursday, April 12th, 2012 AT 5:43 AM
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
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Check compression. The reason I say that is this. You mentioned you see fumes coming from the oil fill. That tells me there may be excessive blow-by from bad or worn rings. If the compression is low enough, it won't start because it can't draw the fuel in. Also, starting fluid burns easier than gas. I you have gas in the carb, good spark, the timing is correct, and you have good compression, the engine doesn't have a choice. It has to run.

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Thursday, April 12th, 2012 AT 3:48 PM

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